The Lonely Centrist

A place for reasoned debate about the issues of the day.

See my complete profile

Friday, September 15, 2006

Poll Crazy

One of my favorite sites, Mystery Pollster, is now just Pollster. In this column, contributor Charles Franklin considers the recent uptick in President Bush's approval numbers. It's got a neat chart of the polls, and that's what caught my eye: Franklin tracks 336 national polls of President Bush's public approval taken since January 1, 2005,.

Think about that. That's more than a poll every other day. Is there any conceivable need for this? Does it serve a purpose? Help journalists and hence the public gain understanding? Do it do anything? It's like trying to report on a marathon by monitoring the heart rate of the contestants with each step. "It's up! It's down! It's up again!" The fact is, a huge number of these polls are taken as "make news" polls; we'll do a poll, and report on it. Reporters have forgotten what it means to "report." Where is the reporter who will go to an event and simply report on what he sees, or what the speaker says?

  • The Skeptic
  • Andrew Sullivan
  • Michael Barone
  • The New Republic
  • National Review
  • Democracy Project
  • Bob Bauer
  • Center for Competitive Politics
  • Ryan Sager
  • Going to the Matt
  • Professor Bainbridge
  • Volokh Conspiracy
  • Mystery Pollster
  • Amitai Etzioni
  • Alexander Chrenkoff
  • Middle East Media Research Institute
  • Right Democrat
  • Democrats for Life